An English girl in New York
"Snark off, you weirdo!" she hissed, wondering whether he would ever get the message. Why did she have to be pursued by a man who kept terrapins? It was insulting. She'd rather be listening to Bat Segundo and downing a Horlicks than speaking to this abhorrent man.
This had been going on for about four weeks. She would clack her stilettoed way from the subway station to her apartment every night at about 6.30pm. And every night she would be joined in the lift "sorry, elevator" by Ernest Blatt. Ernest rather alarmingly lived across the hall from her, which was a cruel twist of fate she had never understood or come to terms with. By rights she should be sharing her floor with a George Clooney look-alike and some glamorous fly-by-night with whom she could party 'til dawn at the hottest clubs. Instead she had Ernest and that insufferable old crone who never stopped whinging about her bunions.
Kate was a will of the wisp, what her grandmother would have termed a "flighty piece". She was adventurous, irreverent and indiscrete. She had come to New York from London (via Singapore, but that was another story) to give her regards to Broadway. She had not come to suffer the nightly attentions of Ernest Blatt in the elevator, or the incessant protestations of pain from Mrs Costello. She wanted to be an actress and this is where she was going to make her mark. She wanted the roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd. It hadn't happened for her in the West End but by God it was going to happen for her here.
OK, so right now she was stuck promenading poodles in Central Park in the most ludicrous fill-in job you could ever imagine. But in terms of paying the rent, this doggy walking thing was quite a good gig. She had her regulars now and she hardly ever got the leads in a muddle any more. In fact, wandering around the park all day gave her time to read all the classics she'd so studiously avoided at school but felt she should know as an aspiring actress.
Only last week she'd plonked herself on her favourite park bench and was perusing Twelfth Night with an intelligent look on her face. The only attention it drew, though, was from that insane jogging bloke she always saw. He almost screeched to a halt in front of her and, still running on the spot, said breathlessly: "Drop everything and give me ten ... books are for wimps!"
She replied in deadpan accents, summoning every ounce of withering Englishness to say: "I bet your mother wears Army boots, you freak."
"You British girls talk like the Queen but have the manners of a galleycat,’ replied jogging bloke, sounding surprisingly prim for a muscle-bound hulk.
Let’s face it, she’d never get used to the city that never sleeps. But, dammit, she was going to make it sit up and take notice.
Miss Snark is not sure what a Horlicks is ..and the library reference lady just hissed "pervert" and hung up when she called to inquire.
Scoring to come.